Saturday, April 10, 2010

Paranormal Activity (2009)


I finally sat down and saw the film that's been hyped for so long. I guess there are two camps to this movie. One is that you'll love it, or you'll hate it. There seems to be no middle ground here.

The story is about a couple who move into a suburban house that seems to be haunted. They do their own investigating by setting up a video camera to document the many odd events that are happening inside their house.

Now I have to say it is an interesting premise, and one that I think really works on some level. Yet it was not scary at all, and I found the movie quite dull. I did like the performances of Katie Featherston, and Micah Sloat as the haunted couple. Though I did think Micah's performance sometimes grated on me. I sometimes wanted to kick the screen when he was on. I don't know if that is a good thing here since I wanted to have some empathy towards the characters, and in the end I really didn't care what happened to them.

People compare this movie with the Blair Witch Project, yet I liked that film a bit better. Maybe because it was first, or maybe because it actually had some eerie parts in the movie that made it a really neat film to watch.

In Paranormal Activity I didn't get any sense of the outside world, yet the action was happening in suburbia. I realize that this is a low budget film, and may in fact be a micro-budget film that actually went on to make a lot of money.

Yet I think it was all hype. The studio did a good job at doing it, and convincing people to go, but to say that this film is a good horror film is a bit much to say.

I was interested in the film as a filmmaker, and was really hoping that it would have some decent scares or some decent plot points that would be interesting. Unfortunately it does not.

I give credit here to the actors who were very convincing. From what I've read the actors did not have an actual script to go by. The filmmaker drew up an outline, and that the actors would improvise their scenes together. That in itself is ballsy, and I really think the actors should get a bigger credit here then the filmmaker. The filmmaker surly knew talent when he saw it, but what I would really love to see is to have the actors get some more work from this. I really think their the ones whose talent shines in this film, and I look forward to seeing them in other work real soon.

If your interested in seeing what you can do wit a limited budget I suggest you watch this, and key into the performances. Remember as the filmmaker said in an article "knowing good talent and getting that talent is important". It makes or breaks a film, and this is one example where good actors shine.

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